After it earned itself a bad name in the Park Street gangrape and Garden Reach shootout cases, Kolkata Police were compensated on Sunday, when Ujjwal Roy, officer-incharge of the Shyampukur police station, scaled the highest peak, Mount Everest, at about 6.35am (IST).
Fifty-year-old Roy, who passed out of the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering, Uttarkashi, and the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute, Darjeeling, and who has also climbed 11 peaks in India, reached the Mount Everest summit at 8,848 metres (29,028 feet), along with Debdas Nandy, both members of the Snout Adventurers’ Association.
“Today’s a great day for Kolkata Police. I’m glad to hear that Roy reached the top of the world a few minutes ago. We’re waiting to give Roy and his team a big felicitation,” said Surajit Kar Purokayastha, commissioner of Kolkata Police, a few minutes after Roy conquered the Mt Everest summit.
Ujjwal Roy, Debdas Nandy and Monidipa Datta, three members of Snout Adventurers’ Association, had left Kolkata on March 31 for the expedition.
They reached the Everest base camp (5,334 metres) on April 12. They had to wait for the Kumbhu icefall to open. A few days later, when the icefall was open to climbers from different parts of the world, Roy and his team tried to become acclimatised with the extreme weather conditions on the high altitude.
They started practising on the Kumbhu icefall - the first dangerous zone to be crossed to reach the foothills of Mt Everest.
After much effort, they managed to reach Camp III at a height of 7,162 metres. But, in the first week of May, they had to climb down to the base camp because the weather closed in with extreme turbulence and snowstorms.
On May 14, after the sky cleared, they again started out for the summit from the base camp and reached Camp II at a height of 6,400 metres.
They rested there for the entire day on May 15, and the following day, they left Camp II and reached Camp III once more. On May 17, they left Camp III and reached Camp IV.
On May 18, after resting for half a day, they started out for the Everest summit at about 7.30 in the evening. But their team member, Monidipa Datta, became ill because of altitude sickness and a lack of oxygen.
She had to be shifted to Camp III and then onwards to Camp II. On May 19, at about 6.35am (IST), they climbed the peak of Mt Everest. After spending a few minutes there, Roy and Nandi started descending to Camp III.